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October 18, 2004

I Voted

By Byron LaMasters

I voted an hour ago in my second presidential election. Karl-Thomas, and a bunch of the University Democrats camped out in front of the UGL all night. I have to give them credit where credit is due. They were all over the 10 PM news last night, and when I arrived to campus at 6:55 AM this morning, there were three local television trucks taking live shots of the line of about 50 people. Additionally, the Daily Texan had a huge picture and story on the front page of the paper. The whole idea was a bit goofy, but it generated great publicity, even though the only real benefit of camping out in front of the early vote location is the satisfaction of voting first (7:05 as opposed to 7:15 AM). I guess it's a big deal, especially for people that were either voting for the first time, or for the first time in a presidential election.

I cast my first vote just about four years ago when I went with my mother one day after school to vote early for Al Gore. This time it was with a bunch of University Democrats for Kerry and the rest of Democrats on the ballot. Overall, the process took about two minutes.

First, I checked the Democratic box for straight ticket voting...
Then, I scrolled down to write-in Lorenzo Sadun for Congress...
Then, I voted for Libertarians Quannah Parker and Tom Oxford for Court of Criminal Appeals...
Then, I voted FOR the Capitol Metro Referendum.
Finally, I reviewed everything to make sure the computer didn't do anything quirky, like cast a vote for a Republican or something, then pushed the "cast ballot" button.

Karl-Thomas and I talked about the Capitol Metro Referendum for a little bit last night. He said he was conflicted on the measure, as he thought that the commuter rail proposal was too watered down, and rejecting it might force the city to go back to a real light rail proposal. However, he changed his mind after people basically told him that the proposal was commuter rail or nothing, and a little bit of mass transit is better than none at all. The proposal was watered down because in 2000, Austin narrowly rejected a light rail referendum because a right/left coalition of anti-rail conservatives and anti-development liberals, and small business owners that would have to relocate if rail were to be built joined together in opposition. Essentially, the downtown bureaucrats wanted to put together an uncontroversial proposal this time that would pass easily, since something is needed as Austin has perhaps the worst traffic of any midsized city in America.

I can't say that any of the votes were tough calls for me. Travis County is lucky to have extremely well qualified Democrats up and down the ballot. It's always a pleasure to vote for local elected officials that I've worked with like Elliott Naishtat and Bruce Elfant as well as candidates that I've had the opportunity to get to know through the primary and general election season like Nancy Hohengarten, Stephen Yelenosky, Lorenzo Sadun and Greg Hamilton. Voting for Ronnie Earle, even though uncontested, is my way of bitchslapping, errr... voting against Tom DeLay, Tom Craddick and the GOP corruption in this state. And of course, I had been waiting four years to vote against George W. Bush again. It was a pleasure to cast not just an anti-Bush vote, but also a pro-Kerry vote, because I trust, and have confidence in the next President of the United States, John Kerry.

Posted by Byron LaMasters at October 18, 2004 08:38 AM | TrackBack


Karl-T camped out all night with the University Democrats? After the stress of last week? =)

Sounds like he's not taking everybody's advice and getting sleep.

Oh well...

oops, excuse me, I have to shred some more Democratic registration cards. Just got a fresh shipment in from Wisconsin and Ohio.


Posted by: Chris Elam at October 18, 2004 12:20 PM

Too bad you're not my father. Oh wait a minute. That's a good thing.

Posted by: Karl-T at October 18, 2004 01:06 PM

Ronnie Earle has a Libertarian running against him so he isn't really uncontested.

I voted straight ticket for the first time- it made things a lot quicker. And I voted for Libertarians in all the races with Republicans but no Democrats.

I also voted FOR the light rail- it needs to pass!

Posted by: Andrew D at October 18, 2004 01:34 PM

Chris, could you divert some more of those Florida cards to Austin? My shredder's not being used as much as it should be.

Every little bit helps.

Posted by: Drew at October 18, 2004 01:55 PM

Karl... "who's your daddy?" hahaha

All references to your father aside... John Kerry's chances of winning weren't improved one bit by a bunch of college kids staying up all night to camp out for football tickets.... er... to celebrate the first day of early voting. Its not like waiting in line for concert tickets - you don't gain anything by staying up all night just to be the first one to vote.

Seriously, what's the point of camping out all night to celebrate early voting? Wouldn't that just increase the odds that in a stupor of exhaustion, you might accidentally fill in the wrong bubble, or pull the wrong lever, or push the wrong button? lol

Or is this going to be the latest attempt by Democrats to try and take a Bush victory in Texas down by going to the courts?

"Your honor... we were too sleep-deprived to vote. We were disenfranchised. We stayed up all night and can't be held responsible for voting for the wrong candidates. We respectfully ask that you give the election to John Kerry"


Oh well, I'm off to disenfranchise some more minorities. Drew, I'll be sending you about 50,000 cards to shred tonight - they just came to me straight from one of Karl Rove's evil minions. Check your mailbox tomorrow. =)

Posted by: Chris Elam at October 18, 2004 02:50 PM

I don't think the event had anything to do with improving Kerry or anyone else's chances for election, Chris. I think the idea was to turn voting into a party- to try and encourage people to get out early and cast their ballots. Young people in this day and age are such bitches about not voting, something needs to be done to kick em in the ass or our Republic is in big trouble.

And we have E-Slate in Travis County so you get to review your ballot before it is cast so mistakes are minimal. Plus, straight ticket + Libertarians Tom Oxley and Quannah Parker + FOR Cap Metro isn't hard.

And we are college kids- staying up all night is our cup of tea. Maybe in College Station they get to bed by 9 so they can get up and milk the cows before having sex with them. Redneck Republican bastards.

Posted by: Andrew D at October 18, 2004 03:21 PM

I didn't vote today becuase there were too many people in the line at the UGL. It looks like increased voter turnout may have a detrimental impact on turnout in the highly contested "lazy voter" demo. group.

Posted by: Zach N at October 18, 2004 04:01 PM

hahaha!!!! Yes! What a stunning, in-your-face comeback from Andrew D.! This is why I read BOR. The cutting-edge and thought-provoking commentary!!!!

Isn't the t.u. mascot a cow? Don't you guys drug that poor bovine up on weekends to make it more "docile" and "submissive"? =)

Seriously... you guys all need to grab a few hours of shut-eye. You're losing your grip on the "reality-based community".

I didn't realize the University Democrats had such a hard time getting their members out to vote. Wow! The only way you can get those "bitches" out to vote is to keep them up all night?? That must be so disheartening... =)

Posted by: Chris Elam at October 18, 2004 04:11 PM

A knee-slapper that needs forwarding off to the Aggie Network...

A t-sip actually used the words "our cup of tea", before starting in on the bestiality charge.

I love it!

Posted by: Chris Elam at October 18, 2004 04:14 PM

Who is this Chris Elam guy? He seems like a big douche bag to me. Hope your dad doesn't go to prison with his old buddy Tom you asshole. Becuase something tells if me daddy dearest takes the fall he will be playing cow to some guys Aggie.

Posted by: Mugsy at October 18, 2004 06:17 PM

"He seems like a big douche bag to me."

he is aggy AND republican. it comes with the territory.

wow, using t.u. and t-sips on a Longhorn website. you should get some aggy pretend-military award for that. i've always thought switching the letters of our university and then writing them in lower-case was quite clever. i guess it's that a&m education at work. the t-sip label doesn't fit, though, because we don't think we're better than you. we know we're better than you.

Posted by: Sal D at October 18, 2004 10:26 PM
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